'When Cameron Doomadgee was found dead in the Palm Island police station, his injuries were like those of someone who’d been in a fatal car crash. The police claimed he had tripped on a step. The Palm Islanders rioted and burnt down the police station. The subsequent trial of Senior Sergeant Chris Hurley – who had been decorated for his work in Aboriginal communities – made headlines day after day, shadowed by Queensland police threatening to strike.'
'The Tall Man tells the gripping story of the trial, of the complex Senior Sergeant Chris Hurley, and of the Doomadgee family as they struggle to understand what happened to their brother. ' (Source: Madman.com.au)
Unit Suitable For
AC: Year 10 (NSW Stage 5).
faith, grief, History, humanity, oppresssion, Power, privilege, racism, revenge, violence
Critical and creative thinking, Ethical understanding, Information and communication technology, Intercultural understanding, Literacy, Personal and social
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures
'Cultural memory involves a community shared memories, the selection of which is based on current political and social needs. A past that is significant to a national group is re-imagined by generating new meanings that replace earlier certainties and fixed symbols or myths. This creates literary syncretisms with moments of undecidability. The analysis in this book draws on Renate Lachmann theory of intertextuality to show how novels that blur boundaries without standing in for history are prone to intervene in cultural memory. A brief overview of Aboriginal politics between the 1920s and the 1990s in relation to several novels provides historical and political background to the links between, and problems associated with, cultural memory, testimony, trauma, and Stolen Generations narratives, which are discussed in relation to Sally Morgan My Place and Doris Pilkington Rabbit-Proof Fence. There follows an analysis of novels that respond to the history of contact between Aboriginal and settler Australians, including Kate Grenville historical novels The Secret River, The Lieutenant, and Sarah Thornhill as examples of a traditional approach. David Malouf Remembering Babylon charts how language and naming defined our early national narrative that excluded Aboriginal people. Intertextuality is explored via the relation between Thea Astley The Multiple Effects of Rainshadow, Chloe Hooper The Tall Man, and the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody. Kim Scott Benang: from the heart and That Deadman Dance and Alexis Wright Carpentaria reflect a number of Lachmann concepts, syncretism, dialogism, polyphony, Menippean satire, and the carnivalesque.' (Publication summary)
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